Consequences of not attending school

Education Penalty Notice (EPN)

Education Penalty Notices are fixed penalty fines. They're issued to parents as a result of their children’s unauthorised absences from school - see EPN Code of Conduct.

The school will issue an EPN warning letter to each parent at the beginning of the academic year and then subsequently each term, before an EPN is issued by the Council.

An EPN may be issued in response to:

  • 10 sessions (5 days) of unauthorised absence with under 90% attendance
  • 20 sessions (10 days) of unauthorised absence
  • Persistent late arrival for school after the close of registration.

We will consider issuing a penalty notice to each responsible parent. The level of the fine is £60 if paid within 21 days, increasing to £120 to be paid within 28 days.

What if I don’t pay the fine?

If payment is not received within 28 days, we will consider prosecution for the unauthorised absence and may take legal action where there is no significant improvement in school attendance.

Legal action

The Attendance Service will undertake statutory casework to deliver holistic interventions to families who require enforcement action.

They will work within the legal framework to ensure that parents are held to account if improvements are not seen in a timely manner.

If you are prosecuted and found guilty of not securing your child's attendance at school, the court can impose penalties, including a fine of up to £2,500, a community order or a jail sentence of up to 3 months.

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